Arts and Culture

striped floor

In collaboration with David Lynch, Mark Frost co-created one of the most enduring fictional universes of all time — Twin Peaks. Bookending the series' return to TV in 2017 after 25 years, Frost has written two innovative novels that take a deep dive into the history of the surreal logging town. More

Robot boy

Alexander Weinstein’s “Children of the New World” is a collection of cautionary tales about extreme emotional attachment to software and silicon.  More

Art Official Age cover

Chuck Klosterman thinks the Internet has ruined a lot of things, including death.More

"I Will Bear Witness" by Victor Klemperer

The author of "Lincoln in the Bardo" recommends Victor Klemperer's two-volume diary that reads as a slow-motion picture of what the Holocaust looked like before it was known Holocaust.More

A poison garden

Amy Stewart is a serious gardener with a side gig – writing about all the plants that could kill you.More

Poison tea

Kathryn Harkup is a chemist with an expertise in poison. She’s made a close study of a famous poisoner that employed everything from arsenic to cyanide to knock off close to 300 (fictional) victims: Agatha Christie, the mystery writer.More

"If Beale Street Could Talk" by James Baldwin

The author of "Another Brooklyn" recommends a James Baldwin novel she says belongs on everyone's bookshelf.More

"The Land at the End of the World" by António Lobo Antunes

The author of "The Sympathizer" recommends António Lobo Antunes' novel.More

"The Complete Short Stories of James Purdy"

The notorious filmmaker recommends the complete short stories of "one of the greatest―and most underappreciated―writers in America in the latter half of the twentieth century."More

Books on books on books

Why do we keep dividing the world of books into different genres — like romance novels, science fiction and literary fiction? Novelist Lauren Beukes says we should simply get rid of the whole idea of genre.More

Rashid Johnson, Antoine’s Organ, 2016.

Rashid Johnson is a rising star in the art world. Using signature materials like shea butter and black soap, he explores themes of race, yearning and escape, and grapples with what it means to come of age as a black artist and intellectual.More

trains for the train sounds, Paris

Cities are full of music — but can cities also BE music? David Rothenberg gives us a tiny history of how composers have used cities to make music, beginning with Pierre Schaeffer’s “Musique concrète.”More

Left to Right: Aaron Henkin, Wendel Patrick (WYPR)

Baltimore-based podcasters Aaron Henkin and Wendel Patrick are interviewing people and telling their stories, block by block.
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Chloe Benjamin

Author Chloe Benjamin on how the magical worlds of her novels are rooted in her daily life.More

The midwives of "Call the Midwife" (BBC)

Anne Strainchamps joins a group of women, Laurie, Jane, Carol and Liz, to watch the premiere of Season 7 of "Call the Midwife" and talk about birth.  More

water

David Foster Wallace gave the commencement speech at Kenyon College in 2005. It was popular enough to eventually be published in a thin little book called “This Is Water.”More

Three of the transgender men whose stories are told in "Unbound"

Sociologist Arlene Stein has been following four people who were identified as female at birth but later transitioned to male.  She tells their stories in her book, “Unbound.”   More

Cruises suck

David Foster Wallace's essays have their own unique cult following. There’s one, “A Supposedly Fun Thing I’ll Never Do Again,” which is a hilarious diatribe about cruise ships, which convinced many of us we should never, ever go on a cruise.More

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